Shakespeare's Comedy of The Tempest

by William Shakespeare

Other authorsEdmund Dulac (Illustrator)
Hardcover, 1908

Status

Available

Genres

Publication

London : Hodder & Stoughton, [1908]. First Trade Edition.

Description

Prospero, wise Duke of Milan, has been deposed by Antonio, his wicked brother and exiled with his daughter Miranda to a mysterious island. But Prospero possesses supernatural powers. Composed at the end of Shakespeare's career, the play contains some of his most lyrical dramatic verse.

User reviews

LibraryThing member aethercowboy
I picked up the Tempest, I admit, mostly due to Prospero's role in The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. I was not disappointed.

The Tempest tells the story of Prospero, the supplanted Duke of Milan, who takes control of small island. He's freed a spirit from a tree, who now faithfully follows him; and he's enslaved the twisted (physically and mentally) denizen of the island.

Prospero discovers that his supplanting brother is nearby on a ship, so he calls a mighty tempest to beach them upon his island. He then tries to work the situation to his advantage, as well as marry off his daughter to the prince, who has likewise washed ashore.

The Tempest is a comedy, which may give you some indication of how it ends, but it is not the destination with this play; rather, it is the route traveled.

If you have ever read anything by Shakespeare, you're bound to enjoy The Tempest, even if you hated what you read, since you were most likely in high school, dissecting the lifeless dry corpse of literature. Like an airy spirit, breathe new life into your comprehension of literature, and get yourself a copy of the Tempest, and start reading!
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LibraryThing member MrsLee
I enjoyed this, though it was a little hard to keep track of everyone and the spirits too.
LibraryThing member DaveFragments
I read this before I saw it staged at the Pittsburgh Public Theater. This is Shakespeare's masterpiece.
LibraryThing member patri104
In The Tempest, by William Shakespeare, an underlying comment on colonization is present throughout the play. For example, in the story, hierarchies are created in which one is privileged over the other, and a binary is created. The other is completely exploited and oppressed by the dominating, and powerful colonizers. The colonizer contains knowledge and lightness, while the colonized display darkness and ignorance. For example, Prospero completely exploits Caliban explaining that he “cannot miss him. He does make our fire, fetch in our wood, and serves in offices that profit us” (Act 1 scene ii). This suggests that Prospero has degraded Caliban to be his slave, and his only use is to do chores for Prospero, and serve him. His entire self-worth as the colonized comes from serving his colonizer. Caliban goes on to explain, “This island’s mine, by Sycorax my mother, which thou takest from me. When thou camest first…I loved thee and showed thee all the qualities o' th' isle…Cursed be I that did so!” (Act 1 scene ii). Despite the fact that Caliban was the originally inhabitant of the island and shared his knowledge with Prospero, his knowledge was used against him, and he became exploited by Prospero. Shakespeare is critiquing the oppression that the colonized have experienced, and may be alluding to the dark side of imperialism.… (more)
LibraryThing member Crowyhead
This is one of my favorite of Shakespeare's plays, in terms of the richness of the story and the language.
LibraryThing member jpsnow
This wasn't quite a comedy and isn't a tragedy. Prospero is an interesting character -- a scholar, a duke, a stranded man, a plotter, and a dad.
LibraryThing member elmyra
I was prompted to read this by my re-reading of the entire Sandman series by Neil Gaiman - and now I can go back and read the last chapter. I only read the play, and very little of the additional material in this edition - I probably will go back and read the rest and re-read the play. I kept expecting something horrible to happen at the end. I did like it rather more than Midsummer Night's Dream.… (more)
LibraryThing member casid100
Many things await for the reader in the play, The Tempest, by William Shakespeare; stranded on an island for twelve years, a Duke is usurped by his brother, a ship wreck, love at first sight, a plot to rebel, a plan to kill the king in order to claim his throne, and the magical prowess, are only the tip of the things that lie within the play. The play lacks a dry moment as the intertwining plots continue to evolve until eventually they come full circle at the conclusion of the play. Amongst the love, revenge, and greed in the play the character, Prospero, stuck out the most as he plots to avenge himself after being sent to the island with his daughter through the use of the tempest and his magical powers. Prospero's revenge is simple; he wanted to show them what he had endured when he was first stranded on the magical island. He also wanted to make the other characters feel guilty for their plot against him.
Despite the intriguing complex characters and the many plots within the play, it is definitely not as good as some of Shakespeare’s other works (i.e. Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet); however it is still another enjoyable work by Shakespeare.
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LibraryThing member schne112
The Tempest, a play by Shakespeare, does not follow his typical formula of for his intense dramas. I would consider this play more of a reflection of what was going on in the world and England in this time period. One of Shakespeare’s later plays, The Tempest, incorporates the mysticism that he used in plays like A Mid Summer Night’s Dream to mirror England’s imperial attitude in colonizing the rest of the world. Alonso, the outside king, his son, Prince Ferdinand, his brother and corrupt Duke crash upon an island representing the educated, and prosperous ‘colonizers.’ The indigenous characters represent nature and ignorance. Prospero, the wronged duke, and his virgin daughter Miranda represent the indigenous elite. Within each group there is a working class and even among the indigenous a hierarchy categorized by black and white magic. Frye uses the “natural order” concept within anarchy. There are the elite, the law that they enforce. There are those bellow them, and the servants. All must be happy within and accept their place within a hierarchy for it to maintain its ‘natural order’ between the Aristocracy and the plebeian. The play does not display Shakespeare’s usual emotional highs and lows, it is based more around the dialogs between characters that cycle and ends fairly anticlimactically. Though the play lacks what someone would expect, it is an interesting historical reflection. He refrains from displaying any real opinion on the process of colonialism.… (more)
LibraryThing member sarasegal
I see The Tempest as a commentary on colonialism. The best example of the colonizer and the colonized is the relationship between Prospero and Caliban. Prospero treats Caliban terribly throughout the play, calling him names and treating him as though he is subhuman. However, the audience gets a look into Caliban through his beautiful "noises" speech in Act 3 Scene 2. This speech exposes Caliban's intuitiveness and connection with nature. It also shows that he is sensitive and intelligent. I believe Shakespeare introduces his audience to this side of Caliban to show that the colonized people are not "savages" to be enslaved or dominated. The scene in which Caliban humiliates himself to get the approval of Trinculo and Stefano shows what colonization can do to people. Caliban is willing to do completely degrading things in order to please Trinculo and Stefano but because he has been stuck in this master slave relationship for so long, he doesn't know how else to live. Shakespeare is making a point to show that colonization can have terrible effects on the colonized. He is also saying that native people may seem different and exotic but that doesn't mean that they are less than. Instead of going into places and messing up the natural order of things we should try to learn from them instead. In this respect I think Shakespeare was very ahead of his time.… (more)
LibraryThing member bui117
William Shakespeare’s final play, “The Tempest”, is a story that encircles the idea of colonialism. Like the story of Pocahantus or the more recent movie Avatar, this story has a pre-set event in which Prospero (the colonizer)came to the island, inhabited by Ariel and Caliban (natives of the island). Prospero manages to place both Ariel and Caliban under his rule. Prospero justifies his command over Ariel when he saves Ariel’s life. He also forces civility upon Caliban when he teaches Caliban his own language. He justifies his slavery over Caliban even further when Caliban attempts to rape his daughter, Miranda; he believes that he is attempting to make Caliban a better person through means of control. Beyond the hierarchy of the island dwellers is the hierarchy that the entire cast falls under. Prospero is sovereign that sits atop the pyramid, holding a ruling position. His relationships to the other characters include being a master, father, king, captor, and possibly even a god. Totally opposite of Prospero, Caliban holds the lowest authority out of anyone other character. He is portrayed as a lowly, mistreated servant, who is even laughed at and belittled by the drunken spirits of the island. The play is structured to have a hierarchy of power and authority for every character, in every scene.… (more)
LibraryThing member fleurdiabolique
Absolutely my favorite of Shakespeare's plays. His vision and poetic skill have come to full maturity in this fantasy of loss and redemption.
LibraryThing member lee319
Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” was a play that cannot be measured or compared to his past works. Everything from the plot to the characters is different. There is no tragedy, no comedy, it is a happily ever after type of story where the antagonists, Antonio and Alonso gets what they deserve and Prospero is once again the Duke of Naples with the innocent romance on the side. On the surface, the play appears to be nothing out of the ordinary but once you dig deeper, there are symbols and ideas pertaining to post colonial, and it creates a new way of play writing.
When I first read “The Tempest,” I thought the relationship between Prospero and Caliban was simply just Prospero being the benevolent man who tries to “help” Caliban and only gets rebuked from him. But after I read it again, I see that Prospero is not the nice protagonist. They are an example of the post colonial theory, between the master and servant, the knowledgeable and the ignorant. It is interesting how the actions and reactions of each character reflect history, whether it is in the Americas, India, Hawaii, etc. The settlers think they need to educate the natives because they do not know the customs and are barbaric in comparison to the colonizer’s culture. Even though Prospero’s treatment towards Caliban is coarse, it is different when it came to Ariel, a fellow native. Because Caliban rebelled to learn from Prospero, he got punished as a result while Ariel tried to win favor in order to gain freedom. Although they both are on the island first, their actions give two different results.
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LibraryThing member RVonbengfort
I have only read about two Shakespeare plays. One of them I have enjoyed and the other I didn’t so much. “The Tempest” is a fantastic story about the lives of a few men and an island. Whether this Island is mystical or not we do not know. However there are fantastical things that occur in the story much like almost all of the other Shakespeare plays. There are angels that can control humans or possess them and there is a monster named Caliban. If you enjoyed Robinson Crusoe then you should definitely give “The Tempest” a read. Although be careful it “is” written by Shakespeare.

When I first read “The Tempest” I read it in its original text. Meaning I read it in Old English or whatever the official name for it is. The play was hard to understand although I did enjoy the adventure of the read. I understood most of the characters and even liked some of them. By far my favorite character would have to be the most flawed one: Caliban. To me he was the most intriguing. He is a slave and son of a witch. It just makes my imagination go nuts. What would a witch’s son look like in Shakespeare? It was exhilarating! The book I rented from the library consisted of a huge analysis that I did not read however I looked at the pictures of the characters and drawings. There was this drawing of Caliban and he looked absolutely hideous. It was a gruesome picture that peeked my imagination and drew me further into the reading.

Eventually I finished and sat wondering what the heck did I just read? I honestly did not even know they were on an island until the day of class when we discussed it. I was astonished that I missed a huge detail like that. So to be honest I went to spark notes I read the translated version. Awesome.

It’s interesting that I read the Tempest now because just three months ago I had rented the movie “Forbidden Planet”, which is a modern translation of “The Tempest” but in space. So not only did I not know what the “The Tempest” was I saw it in space. It is just interesting how things work out like that.

Ever since I’ve read the translated version of the play I have been thinking on and on about this island that they are on and what it represents. It is clearly a metaphor for the Americas. However I have been thinking Islands lately and what comes to my mind when I think of that? The mystical and magical island of “Lost” the television series. The show is basically another modernization of “The Tempest”. If your not a fan of the show I’m sorry but I just thought that was cool. I could probably list some parallels between the show and the play but I shall not. So now I’m on an uber-quest to find more of these modernized versions. “The Tempest” is just that awesome I guess.

Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” has caught the imagination of generations. Something mystical about it appeals to the people. It appealed to me and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I have a feeling the story of Prospero, Caliban, Miranda, and the storm that shipwrecked a navel ship will not fail to outlast even my grandchildren’s grandchildren. It will live on forever and ever. It may cause a religion or not. It may cause a revolution. Who knows? This is just me speculating at the awesomeness of the story. I’m sorry I couldn’t give more examples of why this story is great. It just is and you should definitely read it before you die.
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LibraryThing member singh116
In contemporary society, vampires and Hogwarts have become a hot-topic obsession for American society; both of which amalgamate action and social conflict in a magical, fantastical world. Such a world is an integral and fascinating portion of Shakespeare’s play The Tempest. The progression in the plot roots essentially from the protagonist’s, Prospero’s, powers held on this magical island. From the beginning of the play, he utilizes magic in order to create the tempest that wrecks the ship and places the characters in their own routes. The magic allows him to set up the scenes of his own puppet play and bring about the in-depth look into the characters’ behaviors and changes throughout the play. He uses it to put his daughter to sleep and cloak himself in invisibility as he watches down upon the characters as to how his plans unravel. Furthermore, his control of the spirit Ariel also serves as an important aspect of this plot and character development. Ariel divides and transports the characters around the island. Through the use of the spirit, Propero essentially creates three sub-plays in his overarching attempt at retribution: love between his daughter and the prince; social power and personal struggles between the King of Naples and his court; and the comedic relief with the drunk Trinculo, Stephano and Caliban attempting to take power over the island. Ariel steps in to awake the King when threatened during sleep by his court and also teases them with food. Lastly, the magic also serves as a measure of power creating the themes of power and colonization. Propero’s knowledge of magic makes him more powerful over the previous leader of the island, the witch Sycorax, and her son, Caliban, leading Prospero to eventually make the latter his slave. The power additionally places him in control of the environment and the characters. Thus, the magic brings about fruition of the development and final ending. Though its ending lacks luster with no opposing power against Proper, the story has magic at its integral, partially appealing to many of today’s audience.… (more)
LibraryThing member kofee
I know you wanted us to address the theme of colonialism in the work and I didn’t have too hard a time picking it out, though I’m still a little confused about Shakespeare’s point. There is, of course, the relationship between Prospero and the native islanders, Ariel and Caliban (whose name I first misread as Cannibal, perhaps intentionally). To them, Prospero is a liberator and an educator—he freed Ariel from the tree and taught Caliban religion and language—and to me it came across with a Kipling-esque sense of “white man’s burden.” Prospero is the hero and justified in his dominance of the islanders; Caliban is deformed and is often described as a monster, and his plot against Prospero is seen as villainous, not vindicated by his forced servitude; and Ariel’s plea for freedom early in the play is met with admonishment by Prospero, who tells him to remember his place. Sure, by the end Ariel is granted his freedom, but only because he has been civilized by and remained obedient to his European master. Thus one must question is Ariel ever retains his freedom, for he has been freed but into a world shaped by Prospero that he himself helped build as his servant.

Another aspect of the play I found intriguing was its self-awareness. I was struck several times by a sense that the play was calling attention to or making fun of the fact that it is an illusion on a stage. One example is the first scene of Act II, where Antonio, Sebastian, and Gonzalo argue about what the island looks like. I could be wrong, but it seems like it would call the audience’s attention to whatever sparse scenery there was on the stage. The other big example I can think of is the epilogue, in which Prospero breaks the fourth wall and asks the audience to applaud to help the get off the island. In effect, he is saying that the audience doesn’t just watch the play, they participate in it. They are there and they can effect what happens in the story.

My last observation is a small one. Prospero, with his manipulation of the other characters and general omniscience, seemed like Shakespeare’s doppelganger within the world of the play. He is the author acting as the plot’s agent, perhaps again calling attention to the manufactured nature of the stage, but maybe also allowing Shakespeare to extol the virtues he cherishes most. I thought it was very interesting that Prospero’s magic comes from knowledge, i.e. the books Gonzalo gave him. Shakespeare is saying that learning is power, that the written word has magic in it.
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LibraryThing member gille108
I’m sad to say that my Shakespeare exposure is rather pathetic. I’ve had just about as much exposure as a typical nineteen-year-old: Romeo and Juliet, MacBeth, Othello, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and then The Taming of the Shrew via 10 Things I Hate About You and Twelfth Night via She’s the Man (both of which I don’t think completely count). I had always made it a goal to get a large chunk of Shakespeare’s works under my belt, so I was excited when we were assigned The Tempest.
I do admit, however, it was very different. I don’t remember much about A Midsummer Night’s Dream, so all I have really to compare it to is the first three works mentioned. I have to say that I found the setting of the novel interesting: a somewhat magical uncharted island.
It was also interesting to see some very common story elements, probably not so common during the time. One element which has shown up in COUNTLESS stories is the whole “civilized” man comes over and takes “uncivilized” natives’ land, like when Prospero takes over and makes Caliban, the island’s native- his slave. It was interesting to see how old this recurring theme really was, and it was a reminder that this theme stemmed from history. There was the typical fairy tale love story between Ferdinand and Miranda… a Disney style love story. Wilderness girl meets handsome prince. It’s love at first sight, they get married… the perfect happily ever after. Then there was the ever common “those of lesser power plotting to gain power by taking out those of higher power,” such as Caliban planning to take out Prospero and the group trying to take out the King of Naples in his sleep. Like I said, very interesting to see how far these typical storylines date back to.
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LibraryThing member riley116
“The Tempest” by William Shakespeare can be seen as both a comedy and a romance. The love between the young virgin Miranda and the price Ferdinand show the romantic side. While the Prospero’s slave, Caliban, adds comedy to the play by his constant cursing of his master. It is up to the reader to determine whether this play is a romance or comedy. Personally, I interpreted this novel to lean to more of the romance side. I came to this interpretation by the relationship between Miranda and Ferdinand so heavily focused on. There are those “aww” moments when between Ferdinand and Miranda that make him a well liked character. When Ferdinand first sees Miranda for the first time in act 1 scene 2, “Most sure, the goddess on whom these airs attend!” Ferdinand cannot believe his eyes and tells Miranda that she must be a goddess. The two instantly fall in love and Ferdinand offers to make Miranda queen of Naples almost immediately. The love between to two can be seen as either shallow or genuine. I have interpreted it to be genuine as Ferdinand treats Miranda respectfully and even ignores their difference in social classes. I actually enjoyed this so-called “romance” more than Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet”. It was more interesting in the way that I did not know what I was reading before I actually read it, which was the case with “Romeo and Juliet”. Also, the wide variety of eccentric characters more the play more unique. This play is quick and easy to read and I would recommend it to anyone who is looking to improve his or her knowledge of literature.… (more)
LibraryThing member MorganHelmstetter
"The Tempest" written by Shakespeare is not like any other play written in his time. The plot was shown to be rather dull. with not a powerful ending as well. While reading through the story, I found it to be very slow, but not the worst thing I've ever read. One theme that stuck out to me the most was the binary opposition. Almost every character had a opposite which served them well throughout the story. One example of binary opposition was master and the servant subjects. The master was Prospero who was the former duke out for revenge, but ruled most of the island. Then there were the servant subjects, consisting of Ariel and Caliban. Ariel is a high class servant who basically was forced into serving for Prospero, due to certain circumstances, while Caliban is the "native" savage, hence the word native. On the island there is a social order brought up that basically involved every character. The unnatural and natural society. The unnatural consisted of black vs. white magic and things of those nature. The natural society was basically the upper level class that was based on education and obedience. Each of these new orders played an important role of how the play took place. While the spirits on the island used their white magic, the witch was able to use her black magic, causing chaos between the orders.… (more)
LibraryThing member watki108
The text in The Tempest is definetely not the easiest to read, but you are glad that you read it, after the fact. The Tempest demonstrates a fun story of true, innocent love, and well as anger, greed, and jealousy. You definetly get a mizup of emotions while you read it. I liked the The Tempest because it not only has a great storyline, but has several other storylines running through it which keeps things intesting. Another thing that keeps it interesting is the use of magic and spirits, which to me always spices things up a bit. What made me understand it a lot easier is I went to a website with a plot overview, so I could somewhat have a clue of what was going on. I am not the best with the language of William Shakespeare.
I thought it was amazing how Shakespeare made the brothers go against eachother to such an extent that one would want to kill the other brother, just as a lusting for power. This demonstrates afar fetched approach of greed. Nonetheless, situations like that go on all the time and exist throughout the world.
I loved Ferdinand's and Miranda's love because it was blind and true. Even with prospero against it, love found a way to make it through to them.
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LibraryThing member wong146
Shakespeare is most well known for his Romantic plays, which encompass Romeo & Juliet, Hamlet, Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Tempest, and more. However, out of all of his renowned works, The Tempest feels recycled. The story has two main components: Ferdinand and Miranda’s love, and Prospero’s revenge. The rest of it seems extraneous- the miniature scenes between Stephano and Trinculo seem like filler; the group of Alonso, Gonzalo, Sebastian and Antonio have nothing going on except for a plot to kill each other. Meanwhile, Prospero has a presence throughout the play, always influencing someone through the use of his magic, spirits, and Ariel.

It is apparent that Shakespeare was influenced by the colonization of the time. A prominent theme in The Tempest is the “unnatural” versus the “natural”. Like in “Lord of the Flies”, the men that Prospero bring to the island seem to return to “unnatural” states, becoming suddenly savage in their determination to take the opportunity to kill one another. Meanwhile, Prospero continues to control each individual situation on the island.

Ferdinand and Miranda begin a very typical Shakespearean love. There’s love at first sight, royalty involved, and in Ferdinand’s case, so much love for Miranda that he is willing to haul logs for Prospero in order to be allowed to court her. Too bad we’ve already seen this in all of Shakespeare’s other plays. Their romance is boring, the only interested aspect being Prospero’s control over them. It is apparent that Prospero has a power-trip issue. Although it’s understandable that he wants revenge against his usurpers, the fact that he is willing to control his daughter’s happiness and relationship confirms his need for power.

I find that the Tempest really lacks any interesting story of its own. It seems like a retelling of Shakespeare’s previous work. It’s not really one of his great Tragedies at all; I’d say its only claim to fame is that it’s the last play he wrote by himself. While most Shakespeare isn’t appealing to the younger crowd, the Tempest manages to be the least interesting play he wrote.
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LibraryThing member shaml101
Compared to Shakespeare’s other work, I can’t say I really enjoyed “The Tempest.” This is mainly due to the fact that the story did not seem to go anywhere. It was very straight forward with little to no tension, which surprised me since this is usually what I expect from Shakespeare. Nothing really significant changes or happens in the story. In general the story line did not really go anywhere. The play just seemed to be focused on the personalities of the characters. However, it would be unfair to say that there is absolutely nothing to be taken from this text. While the story itself doesn’t seem very developed, some correlations can be made to the colonization that was occurring around the time Shakespeare wrote this particular play. A specific part in which colonization seems to be represented is in the relationship between Caliban and Prospero. Caliban was once the original inhabitant of the island. Then when Prospero was banished (much like many of the people who colonized to new countries like Americas) to the unknown island he meets Caliban. Caliban then shows Prospero around the island and teaches him all he needs to know about it, and before long Caliban is the servant to Prospero. This seems to connect with the movement of Europeans to the Americas and the Europeans taking over the land that originally belonged to the Native Americans. Also like the Europeans, Prospero teaches Caliban to speak English just as the Europeans tried to teach the Native Americans to speak there languages and to read and write. Both the Europeans and Prospero claim to want to “civilize” the natives. While these connections to colonization in Shakespeare’s piece are interesting it is unclear as to what exactly Shakespeare is saying about colonization. Is it good? Is it bad? Who’s in the right and who’s in the wrong? While Shakespeare does portray Caliban as a horrible and rude creature the audience can’t help but to feel sorry for him and his situation. At the same time, Prospero’s character isn’t all completely bad either. All characters are presented with good and bad. Perhaps this is what Shakespeare was commenting on. That neither side is technically right or wrong. It’s all gray area and just depends on how you look at it.
All in all, I wouldn’t call “The Tempest” a horrible read just slightly unsatisfying. Mainly this is because the story doesn’t lead to any real outcome and everything basically remains the same.
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LibraryThing member hahnasay
Its Shakespeare! What more do you want me to say. He's wonderful!
LibraryThing member RogerRamjet
On rereading the Tempest, I realize that despite the title there is very little action in the play and it demonstrates Shakespeare's emphasis on character over plot. But the characters are fascinating. Prospero at times seems a type for the author himself, and of course as such he is the wise master and hero. But at the same time or a moment later, his manipulations and his selfishness make it not too hard to empathize with the hatred he inspires in Caliban, despite Caliban's repugnance. Then in the Epilogue, Prospero, not just a character that walks off of the page, actually asks the audience for permission to walk off of the page before doing so. There is not time to discuss all of the characters, but Miranda's sudden transformation from wondering innocence to worldly cynicism is both startling and yet somehow believable. I remember the Tempest being described as Shakespeare's perfect play, because it so completely conforms to Aristotle's unities of time, place and action. Yet the play has to be considered experimental in its deliberate artificiality and the distance between the audience and the action because it is a play within a play within a play. It is in essence a play about the making of a play. Definitely worth repeated readings.… (more)
LibraryThing member libraryhermit
My life is better because of this play. I don't know exactly how or why, but I just know that if I hadn't experienced The Tempest 8 or 12 times over the last 30 years, my life would not now be the same.
Reading this play convinces me that it is of such high quality that everybody in the world should at least see one Shakespeare play. This could be in the top 5 list of the absolute best. When Prospero and Miranda are alone and talking, it reminds of how every family in the world is isolated and cut off from society to one degree or another. Sometimes by choice, sometimes by accident. Prospero's accident was having the brother that he did, but his choice was to get out. Good choice. But eventually he must relent by reintroducing some of his old acquaintances and relatives back into his life, but this is on his own terms. His terms are bringing them to where he is, by magic. Even though he thinks he is getting his own way, the victory is not what he had expected it would be. We all learn this through bitter experience.… (more)

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